The Aussie spirit is under duress as we confront the realities of our current bushfire crisis that continues to ravage vast sections of the continent that we all love and treasure.  In more recent history, Australia has not experienced such widespread devastation and disaster. The personal, social and economic impacts to communities, the flora and fauna, livestock, farms and forests are horrendous and disruptive. 

We now have ecological tragedies, multiple community maelstroms, economic uncertainties and grievous catastrophes emerging on a daily basis.  Loss of life and property is heartbreaking.   Loss of our animals also devastating.  Loss of landscape, either forest or farm is unprecedented.

And so, we genuinely pause to thank God for the thousands of emergency services workers, professional and volunteer, our defence personnel and others who have leaned into this disaster.  This is Australia.  We all help, we all grieve, we all pray and we all offer support and care when we can.

This time, our nation is in need of acute care.  As a part of God’s global church, it’s important that we not only intercede, but continue to live out our faith in practical ways to demonstrate God’s kingdom here on earth.

The plight of our nation is currently tenuous; so our prayers are intensified to reflect the heart and character of God.

We pray, our Father,

May our lives reflect deeply your character and posture during this time,

May we listen well (and not offer advice),

May we roll up our sleeves and offer support when and where we can,

May our service be real and heartfelt,

May we allow questions, and loss to be expressed without defensive response,

May we give with generosity to those who have lost much,

May we express sorrow amidst the unbelievable loss of others,

May we identify with the plight of the grieving and those who are destitute,

May we care deeply, offering hope found through our Christian convictions, and

May we lean in together for the future of this great Southland that we steward together.

Amen

These are solemn and defining days – how we respond is important for the future of our nation.  We know not why these acute trials invade our communities, but we stand together in the hope that mutual care and support is critical.  We know too that God has not abandoned us, and we trust in His restorative hand to guide our future.

For…’We are brought down to the dust; our bodies cling to the ground.  Rise up and help us; rescue us because of your unfailing love’.  Psalm 44:25-26

 

Andrew Ball

Executive Ministry Director